Full article LINK below, from Lisa McCormick from Consumer Affairs she gets the real FACTS out there and has been writing about Bark Buckle UP for more then 3 years. Bark Buckle UP is the Original Pet Travel Safety education and statistics program, who doesn’t make/sell products and is NOT bias.
Here is a teaser of her article:
The founder of the California-based Bark Buckle Up said unrestrained dogs involved in car accidents can also pose a threat to emergency workers.
Some dogs, for example, may try to protect their owners and not allow paramedics to treat the injured driver or passengers. Frightened dogs may even attack first responders, said the pet safety organization’s Christina Selter.
In those cases, emergency workers are often forced to put the dogs down so they can save the injured person’s life.
“This is so hard for first responders,” Selter said. “They love animals. But if a car is on fire and the dog is hovering over its owner, they may not have a choice.”
Selter has spent the past several years educating pet owners about the importance of keeping their dogs and cats restrained in vehicles. She’s well aware of the distractions — and safety problems — caused by dogs and cats that travel unrestrained in cars, trucks, and SUVs.
And while she appreciates the attention the AAA/Kurgo study has generated about this issue, Selter said the survey’s findings are flawed.
The study, for example, said 31 percent of drivers acknowledged being distracted by their dogs when driving. “That’s not an accurate number,” Selter told us. “The number (nationwide) is extremely higher.”
Selter also questioned the methodology AAA/Kurgo used to reach its findings.
“You have to look at how their study is worded,” she said. “They said 31 percent of the people in their survey ‘admitted’ they were distracted. When we do these studies, we record the actual distractions — not people just admitting to being distracted.
“When you gather these types of statistics, you have to observe and record what people do and don’t do,” Selter added. “It’s nice that they talked to pet people in their study, but these aren’t real statistics.”
What about the number of drivers who don’t restrain their dogs in a vehicle?
The AAA/Kurgo study found only 17 percent of dog owners used any type of pet restraints. That means 83 percent don’t retrain their pets in a vehicle. Selter said that figure is off, too.
“We’ve found that 90 percent of drivers who have pet in the car with them do not restrain them properly or (restrain them) at all,” she said, adding her organization works with police chiefs and law enforcement agencies nationwide to collect its statistical data.
And remember the figures AAA used to describe the force exerted by an unrestrained dog involved in a car accident? How an unrestrained 80-pound dog in a crash at only 30 mph will exert 2,400 pounds of pressure?
Selter said those numbers aren’t accurate either.
“AAA hasn’t done any crash testing,” she said. “We’ve done this since 2007 using approved methods. And we’ve found that a 60-pound dog, child, or even suitcase in crash going 35 mph becomes a 2,700-pound projectile. Basically, the object morphs into the size of a baby elephant.”
The nationally-recognized “pet safety lady” also called AAA’s survey “biased” because the organization teamed up with Kurgo — a Massachusetts-based company that sells pet restraints.
“They would have been better off partnering with a shelter or rescue group,” she said. “But this study is only a public relations move by AAA.”
Something good, however, has come from the survey, Selter said. “At least more people are now aware of issue.”
Pet owners can find more information about securing their dogs and cats in a vehicle — and other pet safety travel tips — on Bark Buckle Up’s Web site.